OwlCrate Jr Book Box Review + Coupon – September 2019


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OwlCrate Jr is a monthly book subscription box for kids aged 8-12. They send books as well as interesting and educational book-related items.

This box was sent to us at no cost for review. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)

About OwlCrate Jr

The Subscription Box: OwlCrate Jr

The Cost: $27.99 a month + shipping. Save with longer subscriptions.

The Products: You will receive (1) hardcover middle-grade book plus assorted, gender-neutral, book-related items.

Ships to: The US for $7.99, Canada for $9.99, and International for $19.99

OwlCrate Jr September 2019 “Legends of the Deep” Review

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    This month’s theme is “Legends of the Deep” and our box includes a lot of sea creature-inspired goodies! This card details some of the items we received in our box. 

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      Each month they send a little magazine that features an interview with the author. This month they also included a crossword puzzle and an interview with one of the artists featured in our box. The last page offers information about their photo challenge contest. As always the artwork on our booklet is fantastic!

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        Malamander by Thomas Taylor – Retail Value $16.99

        Our story this month is a brand new release which is pretty exciting! Our main character, Herbie Lemon, is the Lost-and-Founder at the Grand Nautilus Hotel in Cheerie-on-the Sea, which transforms over the winter into the more aptly named Eerie-on-the-Sea. This town is full of peculiar characters and local legends, and our narrator seems to know a lot more than he lets on which is surprising to the audience as you discover what a strange world he lives in.

        The adventure begins when a girl, Violet Parma, slips in through his window in search of his help. She also seems to be running from unwanted company in the form of a “Boat Hook Man” which is just as horrible as it sounds. While he has never met her before, everyone knows the story of the baby who got left behind at the hotel after her parents disappeared near the seaside. Now Violet has returned to try and find her parents, which is the perfect job for a Lost-and-Founder like Herbie. This adventure was creepy and interesting, especially once you realize that the mysterious, legendary Malamander could be involved.

        I really enjoyed the matter of fact way that the author introduces some of the strange things in the book such as the talking cat and the famous Mermonkey. They are woven into the story in such a way that you don’t doubt their authenticity and instead they become important parts of the tale. This was a pretty easy read and I think it will be a fun one for kids! FYI though, there were two adult uses of the “d” word, although they didn’t seem to stand out too much and fit within the context of the story.

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          In each box, there is a signed letter from the author which I always find to be such a unique and personal inclusion. We also received a signed bookmark to add to our book.

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            Malamander Bookmark

            We also received this other great bookmark to go along with our book! This is illustrated by Tom Booth.

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              The Yeti Files: Attack of the Kraken by Kevin Sherry – Retail Value $9.99 (found here for $6.00)

              This month we also received a second book! This was a really short and easy read that I shared with my kiddos while they ate their lunch. We finished it in one sitting and even though they are younger, they really loved the story and all of the creatures throughout the book. The illustrations were so detailed and fun while the storyline was full of dialogue. When we finished this one, my son was already asking about reading more from this series and he has also claimed this book as his own since he loves looking at the illustrations!

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                Narwhal Gel Pen

                This narwhal pen is adorable and fun in addition to being very practical. I always enjoy the fun pen designs they send and this one features that signature fine tip that always writes so smoothly!

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                  OwlCrate Jr Exclusive Dakuwaqa Poster

                  This print is so cool! I really love the vintage look from the sepia and deep red tones. This was designed by Owen Davey and depicts a half-shark god from Fijian culture, the Dakuwaqa, fighting a giant octopus. This image of the half-shark being wrapped up in tentacles is unique and pretty stunning visually! My 18-month-old was actually really interested in this and kept grunting when I put it away to tell me that he wasn’t done looking! I will definitely be framing this and hanging it up. I love that the sophisticated design and universal subject matter will appeal to all ages and would be just as acceptable in an adult’s room as a child’s!

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                    OwlCrate Jr Exclusive Reading Mermaid Sticker

                    This reading mermaid sticker is colorful and fun as you see she is deeply engaged in the story Jaws. I love her hair swirling around her and the jellyfish above.

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                      OwlCrate Jr Exclusive Gillyweed Tea

                      In order to swim like a fish, you must first grow gills and this Gillyweed loose leaf tea from Riddle’s Tea Shoppe can help you do this. Just a sprig can last one hour! This tea is a decaf blend of peppermint, rooibos and cacao nibs among other flavors. I was a little worried about the chocolate mint flavor, but I found the balance to be perfect! It reads more like a peppermint tea with just a hint of a chocolate aftertaste. Although the scent is very heavily mint chocolate. This was a cute and delicious blend!

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                        Shark Tea Strainer

                        It doesn’t get more adorable than this! To brew our Gillyweed tea, we received this fun silicone shark tea strainer. It comes apart so you can easily fill it and then put the pieces back together. His mouth holds the side of your cup while his tail infuses your water with the delicious tea flavors. Only the tip of his tail really made it into my water, but it was enough to brew my cup of tea! This is not branded, but you can find a similar tea strainer here.

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                          Here you can see my shark tea strainer in action and my delicious cup of tea!

                          Anglerfish Button

                          Each box includes a button that fits with the monthly theme, and this anglerfish is perfect for our deep sea theme!

                          Verdict: I was a big fan of this month’s OwlCrate Jr theme! The books were both great and so was that exclusive art print, which might be my favorite item this month. The tea was delicious and it was such a fun touch to include that shark tea infuser! Once again, this box was so nicely curated with a great mix of exclusive and useful items! Since several of the items we received were exclusive, it’s difficult to estimate the value, but at $35.98 ($27.99 + $7.99 shipping) for this box and two books that retail for a total of $26.98 ($16.99 + $9.99), that leaves a total of $9.00 for the remaining 6 items, which sounds like quite a steal!

                          To Wrap Up:

                          Can you still get this box if you sign up today? No, you will receive the October box. But boxes do sell out quickly!

                          Value Breakdown: This box costs $27.99$7.99 shipping. We received 8 items (not counting the bookmark), meaning each item has an average value of about $4.50.

                          Check out all of our OwlCrate Reviews and the best subscription boxes for kids!

                          Keep Track of Your Subscriptions: Add this box to your subscription list or wishlist!

                          What did you think of OwlCrate Jr?

                          How do subscribers rate OwlCrate JR?

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                          Written by Brandi Dowell

                          Brandi Dowell

                          Brandi has loved the idea of subscription boxes since joining Birchbox in 2013. Finding new products to test out and possibly fall in love with has always excited her. Now, as a mother of 3, she loves discovering new products that can help make parenting a little easier! Her favorites are FabFitFun and Target Baby boxes.

                          Posted in Book Subscription Boxes, OwlCrate JR Reviews, OwlCrate Reviews, Subscription Box Reviews, Subscription Boxes for Kids| Tags: owlcrate jr | 2 comments

                          2 Comments

                          1. My kids didn’t mention the d words… We aren’t swearers in our house, so I don’t love that! 😬 We also don’t drink tea and didn’t use the print, so this month was a little bit of a bust for us. With that said, my youngest is 6 and he grabbed the graphic novel and devoured it and my oldest son said he really liked the book, so that still makes the box worth it even if it wasn’t our favorite month!

                            • They weren’t huge parts of the story, so maybe they didn’t even take notice if they aren’t familiar with them! Glad to know your kiddos liked the books though, even if the rest was a bit of a miss! Thanks for sharing, Pamela! 🙂

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